Sound doctrine is very important to God, in His Word He directs us to teach it, & hold fast unto it ( 2 John 1:9-11, Titus 2:7, etc.). For that reason it should also be important to us & it needs to be guarded and contended for. (Jude 3-4, Rom. 16:17-18). More often people depart from the truth (apostasy) because they did not have sound doctrine as their basis.
We as Christians follow the teachings of Jesus (sound doctrine) that are found in the bible, unsound doctrine is the teaching that contradicts or disagree with the Word of God.
“Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save (G4982=preserve, rescue) thyself, and them that hear thee.” (1 Timothy 4:16).
The Latter Rain Revival aka New Order of the Latter Rain (1947–1952), happened during two separate healing ministries of William Branham & Oral Roberts (In November 1947 Oral Roberts claimed God “appeared to him” and directed him to heal the sick). Groups of people influenced by their teachings formed what is known the ‘Latter Rain Movement‘. They claimed this was the latter rain referred in Jeremiah 3:3, Joel 2:23, and Hosea 6:3. Leaders of the movement in Canada influenced by Branham were Percy Hunt & George Hawtin (who preached British-Israelism among other errors).
William Branham (1) (1909-1965). Branham claimed that in May 7th 1946 he had an angel visitation to announce & later direct his healing ministry. He taught the ‘Serpent Seed‘ heresy (Sermon Sept. 28/58 at Branham Tabernacle, Jeffersonville, Indiana), a doctrine found in Kabbalah, Talmud & Gnostic gospel of Philip. He taught annihilationism (no hell), predestination, didn’t believe in the Deity of Christ but Kenosis, a Gnostic doctrine that says Jesus was a man not God until baptism at 30 year of age, when God (Father alone, a spirit) indwelled in him, a human body or tabernacle. Jesus was just a vessel carrying the Divinity & performed miracles & die as a man.
According to Branham Jesus was not eternal because he had a beginning. Branham didn’t believe in the Trinity. He said: ‘Let me say this with Godly love. The hours approached where I can’t hold still on these things no more… Trinitarianism is of the devil. I tell you that – Thus saith the Lord.” (William Branham, Footprints on the Sands of Time: The autobiography of William Marrion Branham, Part 2 , & Jeffersonville, IN: Spoken Word Publications, 1975, 606-7). Branham recognized P. Lawrie Mathakrishna as the fulfillment of Christ’s Second Advent!
In late 1950’s Branham began talking about ‘speaking things into existence’, & said he created 2 squirrels. Branham claimed he was ‘Elijah’ the last messenger of Laodicea & the messenger of the covenant. Also taught that the Word of God was given in three forms, the zodiac, the Egyptian pyramids, and the written scripture. (Al Dager, Vengeance is Ours, Page 59).
-The Assemblies of God in 1949 officially rejected the Latter Rain/ Manifest Sons of God doctrine as “heresy”.
O. Roberts & W. Branham were not the first faith healers, but there were others before that influenced them. Branham was influenced by Franklin Hall , E.W. Kenyon & also claimed to be the successor of both Smith Wigglesworth & John Alexander Dowie:
- John Alexander Dowie 1847-1907. In June 1888 Dowie comes to the United States and announces his presence as a “healer by faith” and a medium. His statements were recorded by a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle. He declared himself to be Elijah, then John the Baptist, then the first ‘apostle’ of the Restoration. He purchased land in Illinois & established the city of Zion, which had their own police, print shop, stores, bank, schools, no medicines (Dowie taught that healing is promised in the atonement), strict Mosaic dietary laws, etc. & the Christian Catholic Apostolic Church. The church schools in Zion taught the flat earth doctrine. Dowie had masons (e.g. Edmond Ronayne) lecturing at Zion & he also lectured at Masonic Halls. They were considered a cult. Dowie was accused by his congregation of corruption & polygamy, & was then succeeded by Wilbur Glenn Voliva who was another vigorous advocate of ‘Flat Earth’ doctrine.
- James Gordon Lindsay Was born in Zion, Illinois, his parents were disciples of John Alexander Dowie. He was Branham’s first manager, & the publisher of magazine Voice of Healing. He together with Jack Moore were part of Branham’s team. Later Canadian Ern Baxter (Branham’s later campaign manager) & F. F. Bosworth joined the team.
- F. F. Bosworth (1877-1958), he lived in Zion & served on John Alexander Dowie’s cult. Bosworth held tent revivals during the 1920’s. He and Branham met and became good friends & both of them followed the teachings of E.W. Kenyon (A Methodist pastor who studied metaphysical & mind science, and mixed it with Christianity). Bosworth and Dowie met Kenyon during a trip to Chicago. John G. Lake (1, 2) a long time associate of Dowie’s & Deacon of his church, also lived & worked at Zion City for a time, & he frequently held healing sessions and gave sermons in Masonic lodges. Bosworth worked with J. Lake in establishing the ‘Divine Healing Mission’ in Portland, Oregon, they became close friends.
In 1947 when ‘Later Rain revival‘ started, the Fuller Theological Seminary was founded by Charles E. Fuller, a radio evangelist & preacher Harold Ockenga. They were influenced by Branham’s teachings & promoted Dominionism. C. Peter Wagner (1, 2) was a teacher there for 30 years (1971 to 2001), he was professor of Church Growth movement & taught Dominion Theology. Wagner was a head apostle of the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR) that named their movement. In 1998 he founded Wagner University.
Some famous Fuller alumni : Bill Bright, Rob Bell (Emergent), Rick Warren (Emergent), Richard Foster (Emergent), John Piper (Neo-Calvinist), James White (Hyper Calvinist), etc. Fuller was the first evangelical seminary to accept LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) student groups (USA Today). They teach many doctrinal errors e.g. that hell is not literal.
William Branham, Dowie, John Lake, etc. are revered by NAR apostles, some of these apostles are (& were): Bill Hamon, Paul Cain (Kansas City prophet, worked with Branham & claimed worked with Branham’s angel, he laid the foundation for Mike Bickle’s ministries), Mike Bickle (IHOP), John Arnott (Toronto Revival), Randy Clark (Global Awakening, Revival Alliance, Voice of the Apost. -They say he was the spark that started Toronto Revival), Bill Johnson (Bethel, Global Legacy, etc.) who is in the process of building a museum in their honor ‘The House of Generals’, saying that God told him that if he would honor Dowie, etc. then he would receive their anointing; Rick Joyner (Morning Start), John Wimber (Vineyard, Wagner called him “Pioneer of the New Apostolic Reformation”), Todd Bentley (who claimed to have received William Branham’s mantle from Emma, William Branham’s angel), Bill Hybels (Willow Creek, 1), James Gall, Lou Engle (The Call, The Send), Rodney Howard-Browne, Brian Simmons (New Passion Bible), Brian & Bobbie Huston (Hillsong Church), Ted Haggard (World Prayer Center), Steve Shultz (The Elijah List), Heidi Baker, Cindy Jacobs (Generals), Chuck Pierce, Guillermo Maldonado (Rey Jesus), Samuel Rodriguez, etc.
All these apostles have umbrella organizations or apostolic networks that provide training , ‘covering’ & oversight to ministers, churches, schools, businesses, etc. In exchange, besides financial contributions people is required to attend the ecumenical School of Healing and Impartation I & II of Randy Clark (or view the DVD’s) as well as reading books requirements, which include 5 volumes of ‘Supernatural: The life of William Branham‘ by Jorgensen, ‘E.W. Kenyon: True Life Story‘ by Joe McIntyre & F. F. Bosworth book ‘Christ the healer‘).
They are ‘prophesying’ a coming ‘Revival’ or Second Pentecost, but this time will include Catholics & very possibly other faiths as well. (Could a Mary apparition be on the way?).
UPDATE – Aug. 2019: I just found out that ‘Michael Brown, John Arnott and other leaders of the Toronto and Pensacola revivals will be Lighting the Fire Again for a “Pensacola Awakening” on September 4-7, 2019‘.
According to NAR apostles, we need to learn how to restore the blessing of our lost Biblical inheritance by embracing the Jewish roots of our Christian faith. As you can notice the roots of these groups are not good at all! Today these different groups that promote Gnostic doctrines NAR, WoF, Hebrew Roots, Neo-Calvinists, Emergents, etc. are merging together & aligning with the Pope to form the New World Religion. They know many Christians will never submit to the Roman Pope, for that reason I believe big changes are coming soon to the Catholic Church, & then we’ll witness even the greatest apostasy when many will abandon their faith in God for Gnosis (esoteric knowledge).
The Word of Faith (WoF) movement was also developed during this time, late 1940’s under the teachings of Kenneth Hagin (Accused of plagiarizing many of E.W. Kenyon’s work as his own), Oral Roberts & T.L. Osborn (both worked w/ Branham & followed in the teachings of E.W. Kenyon), they also taught Dominion Theology among other doctrines of prosperity, positive confession, faith healing, etc. Some of their followers : Kathryn Kulhman (interfaith healer), Paul Crouch (TBN), Kenneth Copeland (who was Oral Roberts‘ student & personal pilot), Benny Hinn, Joyce Meyer, Joel Osteen, James Robison, Creflo Dollar, T.D.Jakes, etc.
Doctrines that came from the Latter Rain Movement:
- The Dominion mandate – The Church is to “possess the land” and rule on earth BEFORE Christ can return. They claim Jesus cannot return until all His enemies have been put under the feet of the Church.
- Restoration of the Apostles and Prophets – The need of the five (5) fold ministry at the top of a leadership pyramid and submission to Elders (Shepherding) to bring about the perfecting of the saints.
- New & extra biblical revelations, that supposedly God tells them, like prosperity gospel, sowing seeds, spiritual exercises to hear God’s voice (Shawn Bolz, Shannon Johnson, Mark Virkler, etc.), contemplative prayers, the teaching that Jesus needed to be born again– Video, or the doctrines found in Talmud & kabbalah i.e. that Adam was hermaphrodite or bisexual (& that God is androgynous both male & female). Please see video- Kris Vallotton sr. assoc. pastor of Bill Johnson (Bethel Church in Reding Calif.)
- Unity of all believers (including Catholics & mystics) necessary and vital they say, since Jesus cannot incarnate into a divided Body.
- Healing & prosperity are promised in the atonement, & also we can speak things into existence.
- Spiritual warfare – Spiritual mapping, trips to mountains like the Everest, libations, etc. The believers must topple the heavenly powers & take their place in order to rule over the earth.
- Rejection of pre-millennial doctrines. They don’t believe in the Millennium reign of Christ, nor the classic understanding of the Rapture, the Tribulation, the Second Coming and the Millennium.
- Rapture of the wicked, (ie taken in judgment) & the Church will eventually overcome death itself in a counterfeit of the Rapture, explained as a feeling of excitement, “caught up” emotionally when the Lord returns to receive the kingdom from our hands.
- Manifestation of the Sons of God . They are the mighty Army of the Lord a.k.a. Joel’s Army, those in the Body who are perfected by the works of their Apostles & Prophets, and brought (literally) to ‘the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.’ These will receive their final redemption, the immortalization of their carnal bodies & they will have every right to be called gods.
- The ‘Signs & wonders’ manifestations of gold dust, feathers, gems, diamonds, dripping oil, stigmata, etc. in their meetings & congregations, which reminds me of some of the manifestations seen in Virgin Mary’s worship & cults. Remember Jesus said ‘Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe‘ (John 4:48), & ‘An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign‘ (Matt.12:39). Seeking after signs & wonders is NOT a good thing, but it is lack of faith.
- The Antichrist is a spirit, not a person.
- Hell is not literal.